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Creativity, experimentation and innovation
Editors: and

British art cinema: Creativity, experimentation and innovation brings together a selection of essays from both new and established scholars that engage with how far artistic creativity, entertainment and commerce have informed a conceptual British ‘arthouse’ cinema. The chapters show that rather than always sitting in the shadow of its European counterparts, for example, British cinema has often produced films and film-makers that explore intellectual ideas, and embrace experiment and innovation. The book examines the complex nature of state-funded and independent British filmmaking, the relationship between the modernist movement and British cinema, and the relationship between British cinema, Hollywood and US popular culture. The chapters cover the history of British cinema from the silent period to the 2010s. Film-makers explored in detail include Alfred Hitchcock, Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, Derek Jarman, Ken Russell, Horace Ové, Joseph Losey, John Krish, Humphrey Jennings, Nicolas Roeg, and lesser-known artists such as Enrico Cocozza and Sarah Turner. There are new essays on the British New Wave, the 1980s, poetic realism and social realism, the producer Don Boyd, the Black Audio Film Collective, films about Shakespeare, and the work of the Arts Council in the aftermath of World War Two.

L’Année dernière à Marienbad
John Phillips

script-writer and Alain Resnais as director. This film has an enduring and iconic reputation as a leading example of experimental film-making, a reputation that is partly due to the award of the Lion d’Or for best film at the Venice Film Festival of 1961. The distributors had at first proved reluctant to release the film which they considered uncommercial, but thanks to this award, and to a number of private screenings for

in Alain Robbe-Grillet
Sarah Easen

these films never made it past pre-production in time for the Festival and only one was designated a Festival film, The Magic Box . Documentary and experimental film-making initially fared better as the Festival Executive provided a £120,000 budget for documentary film production. This was to be the seed for an idea that became the BFI’s Experimental Film Fund, established in 1952. A sub-committee of the

in British cinema of the 1950s
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The multiple faces of Chantal Akerman
Marion Schmid

installation – and embracing such diverse thematic concerns as coming of age and adolescent crisis, the construction of gender and sexual identities, wandering and exile, Jewish culture and memory. Strongly indebted to 1970s experimental film-making, she has gradually ventured into more commercial cinema, but remains true to the detached, anti-illusionist style that has become her signature, even in more mainstream works. Labelled a

in Chantal Akerman
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Interview with Gideon Koppel
Paul Newland

quality of contradiction to my answers … which I would like to address because it concerns how my work is perceived and the broad strokes of classification imposed on it, in this case notions of ‘documentary’. I have often spoken about my concern with the term ‘documentary’ and how it is used in film and media studies. In that context ‘documentary’ is often conflated with ‘factual television programme making’ and illustrated journalism. My view of documentary film is more affiliated with strands of so-​called experimental filmmaking. This idiom of filmmaking is driven

in British rural landscapes on film
Des O’Rawe

comparisons aside, throughout the 1960s and 1970s Fluxus, with the mercurial Maciunas at the helm, was a genuinely influential artistic movement, and its impact was keenly felt in the world of experimental filmmaking at this time, especially in New York City. In 1965, for example, Maciunas and Mekas devised the Fluxfilm Anthology to produce and exhibit short ­experimental 146 Regarding the real films by artists currently associated with Fluxus. By 1970, the Anthology has gathered over forty works, many of which responded ingeniously to Maciunas’ ludic manifesto. Some

in Regarding the real
Creativity, experimentation and innovation
Paul Newland
Brian Hoyle

David Bordwell has argued is fundamental to art cinema. Katerina Loukopoulou’s chapter explores the often overlooked link between the high aspirations held for film in 1940s Britain (especially within the realm of factual film) and the later flourishing of an Arts Council-sponsored art cinema in the 1970s. Ryan Shand examines the relationship between amateur and experimental filmmaking through an examination of the work of Enrico Cocozza in the 1940s and 1950s. Duncan Petrie provides a new critical overview of British art cinema in the 1960s

in British art cinema
The ambivalence of queer visibility in audio- visual archives
Dagmar Brunow

Library’s Division of Audio-​visual Media, as well as programmes provided by Sweden’s public service broadcasting corporation Sveriges Television. Setting out to show ‘the transformation of Swedish society over the last century’ (, the 1,500 films accessible via are mainly Swedish documentaries, such as industrial, city  179 Naming, shaming, framing? 179 or election films, as well as short films, animations, or experimental filmmaking. Although access to the exhibited material is not limited by geo-​ blocking, knowledge of Swedish

in The power of vulnerability
Open Access (free)
Lorenzo Ferrarini
Nicola Scaldaferri

long treated sounds other than the spoken word and music as merely an accessory to the visual, especially directly after the advent of easily portable cameras capable of synchronous sound. We feel that our approach to audiovisual representation steers away from this tradition towards a direction shown by ethnographic films inspired by more experimental filmmaking styles, such as those produced in recent years at Harvard’s Sensory Ethnography Lab or Manchester’s Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology. We never searched for a close correspondence between sound and

in Sonic ethnography
Jane Roscoe
Craig Hight

experimental filmmaking that looks to investigate matters of form and content. The film was partly intended to parody the work of colleagues at the Britain’s Central Office of Information (where Greenaway had worked): Here were people collating absurd statistics about the number of sheepdogs in South Wales or Japanese restaurants in Ipswich, so I thought I could

in Faking it